Volcanic eruption in Democratic Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Causes Death and Destruction | Business Wire Volcano News
The eruption of Nyiragongo Mountain killed at least 15 people, caused 30,000 people to flee Goma, and destroyed more than 500 houses.
Officials and survivors said on Sunday that after dark in the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo, lava torrents poured into the village without warning. At least 15 people were killed in the chaos and more than 500 houses were destroyed.
This Mount Nilagongo eruption UNICEF said on Sunday that about 5,000 people fled the nearby border from the city of Goma to Rwanda on Saturday night, and another 25,000 took refuge in the northwest of Sake.
There are still more than 170 children still missing on Sunday. UNICEF officials said they are organizing transfer centers to help unaccompanied children after the disaster.
In the end, Goma largely avoided the large-scale damage suffered during the last volcanic eruption in 2002. At that time, hundreds of people died and more than 100,000 people were left homeless. But in remote villages near the volcano, Sunday is full of sadness and uncertainty.
Beatrice Katungu, 47, said her husband and 8 out of 10 children were missing.
“I don’t know what happened, whether they were burned by lava, because the eruption happened at night,” Katungu told Al Jazeera.
“Some people return home on Sunday morning, but unfortunately, my family hasn’t yet.”
The smoke of many houses on fire filled the air.
Florence Rudasigara, another victim of the outbreak, told Al Jazeera that no officials had come to help her.
“I am a widow. I don’t know where to go. May the government help us. We haven’t seen any officials come to sympathize with us. We have been abandoned,” said Rudasigara. “We will starve to death.”
Elsewhere, the authorities stated that at least five people were killed in a truck crash while trying to evacuate Goma, but the scale of the damage has yet to be determined in some of the worst-hit communities.
Residents said there was almost no warning before the dark sky turned into a blazing red, causing people to run around in their lives. The national broadcaster there said a woman gave birth and gave birth to a child while fleeing the outbreak in Rwanda.
Smoke rose from a pile of smoldering lava in the Bhayne area near the city on Sunday.
Innocent Bahala Shamavu told The Associated Press: “We have seen the loss of almost the entire community.”
“All houses near Buhenay were burned down. That’s why we ask all provincial and national authorities and all partners, all sincere people in the world to help this population.”
Witnesses said the lava also engulfed a highway connecting Goma and Beni. However, when lava flowed into the runway, the airport did not seem to suffer the same fate as in 2002.
Goma is the regional hub for many humanitarian agencies in the region and United Nations peacekeeping missions.
Other reports by Esdras Tsongo in Goma.